Double Chocolate Zucchini Cake

Who said vegetables are for savoury dishes? Chocolate and zucchini cake has turned into the new carrot cake in the past year and there’s a good reason for that: it’s just as good and satisfying. If this became a classic in the past few years, I had a very hard time finding the perfect chocolate and zucchini cake, which is as moist and fudgy as airy. So here we go with my lighter version of this perfect cake when in need of a chocolate fix !

I have always loved cakes and desserts better when they are not so sweet and one of the ways you can achieve that at home is to use alternatives giving great texture without adding a ton of sugar. Veggies are actually doing the trick here. We all know about the usual carrots and zucchinis, but we see a lot more people using potatoes or legumes too. Using fresh and seasonal vegetables is truly an amazing way to make your cakes somewhat more sustainable since you can drastically reduce the quantity of other products, especially all the imported ones, in your prep.

Chocolate and sustainability

When it comes to sustainable eating, I think one of my main struggles is with all these products which will never grow here in France. Out of these: chocolate, coffee, bananas, some exotic fruits or spices… There’s a great conflict between eating local or restricting your consumption. Honestly, I don’t think anyone wants to stop drinking coffee or stop having chocolate, right?

The main problem to my mind is that there is no direct alternative to these products and the regulations / labels not so developed. Completely stopping to consume these produce is a personal choice, which I don’t think I am ready to make yet. It is still important to know when a restriction generates frustration and in this case, it would. Probably the next steps you can undertake when willing to limit your consumption of certain imported products is do so gradually. For example, turn your one chocolate cake a week to one every two weeks, then once a month. Same goes for coffee, take one daily out, maybe then a second? Moreover, try to look for the best quality options you have. For chocolate so far, I have not find anything better then organic and fair trade, but I am still looking for more responsible brands, with a true sustainability vision.

Podcast on the topic

If you are interested, there is a great podcast (in French) which covered the topic of sustainability in baking. It is very insightful and basically explains that there are some pretty basic things we can do to make our cakes and pastries more eco-responsible. Yet, we have to admit that some products are very complicated to replace, such as chocolate, making things a bit more complicated.

Si ce sujet vous intéresse, le podcast Sur Le Grill d’Écotable propose quelques épisodes et particulièrement un sur l’écologie en pâtisserie. L’épisode donne quelques conseils pour rendre la pâtisserie plus responsable. Cependant, certains ingrédients restent difficilement remplaçables, il s’agit donc de réduire notre consommation et de se tourner vers des solutions plus locales.

Sur Le Grill d’Écotable – La pâtisserie peut-elle rimer avec écologie?


Français

DOUBLE CHOCOLATE ZUCCHINI CAKE

Prep time: 15 minutes         Cook time: 25 minutes        Chill: —


Ingredients

  • 150g whole wheat flour
  • 80g brown sugar
  • 300g grated zucchini
  • 45g cocoa powder (100% cocoa)
  • 1 egg
  • 20 ml oat milk
  • 50g chocolate chunks
  • 80g melted coconut oil
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 pinches of salt

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 180°C.

Grate the zucchinis, and place them in a strainer with a pinch of salt. Let sit over a sink for 10-15 minutes while you get the cake batter ready.

In the mean time, separate the egg yolk and white. Place the yolk in a large bowl with the sugar, whisk together until foamy. Set the white aside for later.

Add the melted coconut oil in the bowl and the milk. Whisk until combined.

Before adding the dry ingredients, press the zucchinis firmly in the strainer to remove the excess water. Then start adding gradually the dry ingredients: flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and soda, in the wet mix. Then fold in the zucchinis.

In a separate bowl, place the egg white with a pinch of salt and whip until stiff. Gently incorporate the egg white in the cake batter making a bottom-up movement using a rubber spatula. Do the same with the chocolate chunks.

Pour the batter in a baking pan lined with parchment paper and cook for about 20 to 30 minutes. To test if cooked, use a toothpick: it should come out with just a little batter around.

Note

If your egg white isn’t stiff enough, add a little sugar in. I suggest that you cool the bowl, whisk and egg white before beating it forms stiff peaks.


MOELLEUX CHOCOLAT COURGETTE

Preparation: 15 minutes         Cuisson: 25 minutes        Repos: —


Ingrédients

  • 150g farine
  • 80g sucre roux
  • 300g courgettes râpées
  • 45g cacao en poudre (100% cacao)
  • 1 oeuf
  • 20 ml lait d’avoine
  • 50g pépites de chocolat
  • 80g huile de coco fondue
  • 1 tsp levure
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate
  • 2 pincées de sel

Instructions

Préchauffer le four à 180°C.

Râper les courgettes et les placer dans une passoire au dessus d’un récipient ou d’un évier avec une pincée de sel. Laisser l’eau s’égoutter pendant 10-15minutes. Pendant ce temps, préparer la pâte à gâteaux.

Séparer le jaune et le blanc d’oeuf. Placer le jaune dans un grand bol avec le sucre, et mélanger. Mettre le blanc de côté au frigo.

Ajouter l’huile de coco fondue et le lait d’avoine. Mélanger jusqu’à obtenir une consistence homogène.

Ava,t d’ajouter les ingrédients secs, presser les courgettes dans la passoire pour enlever l’excedent d’eau. Ensuite, ajouter petit à petit les ingrédients secs: farine, cacao en poudre, levure et bicarbonate. Incorporer les courgettes à l’aide d’une spatule.

Dans un autre bol, monter le blanc en neige avev une pincée de sel. Incorporer les blancs délicatement à l’aide d’une maryse dans un mouvement de bas en haut. Faire de même pour les pépites de chocolat.

Verser la pâte dans un moule avec du papier sulfurisé. Enfourner pour 20-30 minutes. Vérifier la cuisson have un cure dent ou une pointe de couteau, il doit rester un peu de pâte sur la lame.

Note

Si le blanc d’oeuf manque de fermeté, ajouter un peu de sucre. Je vous conseil de bien refroidir le bol, le blanc d’oeuf et le fouet de votre robot pour monter les oeufs facilement.


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